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Newsletter- November 2012

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About MCC - Accreditation/AQIP -  - Newsletter- November 2012

It is not what we eat but what we digest that makes us strong; not what we gain but what we save that makes us rich; not what we read but what we remember that makes us learned; and not what we profess but what we practice that gives us integrity.   – Francis Bacon

In This Issue:
Cardboard Circuits improve students' understanding of Automotive Electronics | Update on Action Projects

 
Cardboard Circuits improve students' understanding of Automotive Electronics

This is the first in a series of articles to recognize the continuous improvement efforts of MCC’s faculty and staff.

Image: Ken Harrell(Pictured: Ken Harrell, Automotive Technology Faculty Member, reviewing a student’s “Cardboard Circuit” project)

Ken Harrell, a faculty member in Automotive Technologies and Collision Repair, recognized that automotive electronics was an area many students struggle with.  He found that many students who enter these programs have very little electronics background or knowledge.  In addition, many of these electrical components are buried deep within the vehicles and hidden under dashboards, making training more challenging.  Because modern automobiles are becoming increasingly complex, a firm understanding of electronics and underlying principles like Ohm’s Law is a critical element of the program.

During the 2011-12 academic year, Ken Harrell developed a new electronics exercise to provide a hands-on learning opportunity for students.  The project required students to develop a “Cardboard Circuit”.  Each team received a 2’x3’ piece of cardboard on which they designed and assembled at least two 12-volt circuits using automotive components.   Students drew the wiring diagram on their circuit board and presented their project to the rest of the class.  Taking the project a step further, Harrell required students to perform electronics tests on their circuits and write a report as a written exercise.  Teams then traded circuits so students could analyze and test a circuit that they had not built. 

Ken stated that the “process has definitely helped in our student’s basic understanding of automotive electronics.  Following the introduction of the cardboard circuit board exercise, we noticed that regular test scores improved.  The success of this project is also evident to automotive faculty from around the state.  During a statewide meeting, several other faculty members expressed an interest in the project and plan to replicate the project in their own programs.

Ken Harrell’s electronics assignment is a prime example of continuous improvement in action.  He recognized an area students struggle with, developed a project to address that concern, and was able to measure an improvement in students’ performance.  We recognize that many faculty/staff are performing similar feats every day.  While we realize it is impossible recognize all of these efforts, it is our hope to highlight some of them and help everyone see opportunities to make Morgan Community College the First & Best Choice for students.
 
Update on Action Projects

Three is the magic number: AQIP member institutions must have at least three action projects active at any given time.  Of our 2011-12 projects, two are ending and one is being extended.  New projects will replace the two that are ending. 

Peer Reviews

Last year’s projects were recently reviewed by AQIP peer reviewers.  Click on the links to read the reviews. 

Improving Part-Time Faculty Training and Support                  

Status:  EXTENDED

This project did not meet the original timeline and has been extended through May, 2013.  Extra time was spent looking at peer institutions for models and best practices, which will strengthen the end result. 

Growing the Center for Arts and Community Enrichment          

Status: COMPLETED

Perhaps more accurately described as “year two of CACE,” this project met all of its stated goals …and then some! 

Focus on Creativity, Critical Thinking and Personal/Professional Responsibility

Status: RETIRED

This project did not achieve its stated goals, and we have chosen to retire it rather than to extend it. 

 

2012-13 Projects

(click on links to read the Charter Documents)

Both of these new 2012-13 projects arose out of the work MCC did at the AQIP Strategy Forum in April.   

Aligning Data Resources with Operational Processes

This project is intended to help MCC take another next step toward becoming a more data-driven institution. 

Developing an Instrument to Measure Quality Culture at MCC

This project is intended to provide some grounding for MCC’s continuous improvement efforts.



A...QuIP of the Month:

To err is human, but when the eraser wears out ahead of the pencil, you’re over doing it.   – Josh Jenkins